The Maryland Lynching Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Maryland Commission on African American History and Culture Announce Partnership with Joint Statement

Partnership aims to promote equity, healing, and justice in Maryland

(ANNAPOLIS, MD – April 24, 2021) – The Maryland Lynching Truth and Reconciliation Commission (MLTRC) and the Maryland Commission on African American History and Culture (MCAAHC) today announced a partnership in which both commissions will work together to promote equity, healing, and justice in Maryland.

“For over 50 years, MCAAHC has documented the history of the advancements of Black Americans, advancements all made despite the obstacle of oppression. This joint statement intends to provide context for those who see through rose-colored glasses, therefore, failing to see patterns of historic oppression at work today,” said Rev. Tamara E. Wilson, Chair, MCAAHC. “Additionally, it provides a framework for
the work we must do to dismantle these systemic racist practices that continue to disenfranchise and further subjugate Black lives today.”

The MLTRC was established by House Bill 307 in 2019. The Commission is authorized to research cases of racially motivated lynchings and hold public meetings and regional hearings where a lynching of an African American by a White mob has been documented. The Maryland Commission on African American History and Culture is committed to discovering, documenting, preserving, collecting, and promoting
Maryland’s African American heritage. Through shared values and common goals, these two commissions unified their efforts for the purpose of ending systemic racism, promoting racial healing, and community wellness.

“2020 provided indelible moments that disrupted public discourse around race and racism in the United States. Millions of people around the world witnessed a lynching for the first time when George Floyd was murdered by convicted killer Derek Chauvin, and their humanity led to a search for understanding” said Dr. David Fakunle, Chair, MLTRC.

“This statement among many others provides clarity about how this country has always treated Black people, and what necessary steps, such as the recently passed Maryland Police Accountability Act of 2021, are needed to remove the lies of White superiority and Black inferiority
from the American consciousness.”

About the Maryland Lynching Truth and Reconciliation Commission
The Maryland Lynching Truth and Reconciliation Commission was established by House Bill 307. The Commission is authorized to research cases of racially motivated lynchings and hold public meetings and regional hearings where a lynching of an African American by a White mob has been documented.

To learn more, visit msa.maryland.gov/lynching-truth-reconciliation/

About the Maryland Commission on African American History and Culture

Since its founding in 1969 by the nation’s first African American female State Senator Verda Freeman Welcome and Morgan State University Professor of History and renowned African American Historian Dr. Benjamin Arthur Quarles, the Maryland Commission on African American History and Culture is not only the nation’s first ethnic commission, but is also now a 21-seat statewide commission appointed by the Governor. The commission is committed to discovering, documenting, preserving, collecting, and promoting Maryland’s African American heritage through the support of the Banneker-Douglass Museum – the State’s official museum dedicated to preserving African American history and culture; operating Maryland’s one million dollar African American Heritage Preservation Grant Program; and educating citizens about the impact of the African American experience in Maryland. To learn more, visit
africanamerican.maryland.gov.

About the Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives

The Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives’ mission is to serve as an executive branch coordinating
office for the governor that connects Marylanders to economic, volunteer, and human service opportunities
by meeting with Marylanders at over 700 engagements every year. This office also houses the Office on
Service and Volunteerism, Volunteer Maryland, and the Banneker-Douglass Museum, as well as faithbased outreach, and the governor’s ethnic, cultural, and WWI commissions.

Learn more by visiting our website at goci.maryland.gov and connect with us on Facebook and Twitter